Illinois Republican Party Chairman Don Tracy rallies the party faithful at the 2023 Illinois State Fair. Less than a year later, Tracy announced his resignation, citing party infighting. (Jerry Nowicki / Capitol News Illinois)

Don Tracy, who’d held the job since February 2021, explained his resignation in a two-page letter that cited intraparty “power struggles.” He also said he is concerned about the direction the party is taking under the current membership of the Illinois Republican State Central Committee.

State Senate Republican Leader John Curran, of Downers Grove, speaks to the crowd during Illinois State Fair Republican Day festivities in Springfield. (Jerry Nowicki / Capitol News Illinois)

During Republican Day at the Illinois State Fair, state party leaders sought a message of unity ahead of the 2024 presidential election. While former President Donald Trump’s name and political slogans were visible on signage and clothing, the speakers generally kept their focus on Gov. J.B. Pritzker.

(WTTW News)

Last Tuesday was instead an unmitigated disaster for the Illinois GOP — losing every race for statewide office and falling further into super-minority status in the statehouse. It’s prompted calls from within for some soul-searching.

State Sen. Darren Baily, the GOP nominee for governor, speaks at the Illinois State Fair on Aug. 18, 2022. (WTTW News)

In Illinois, where Democrats hold both of the state’s U.S. Senate seats, all statewide executive offices and super-majorities in both chambers of the state legislature, GOP nominee for governor, state Senator and farmer Darren Bailey is hoping to ride in on a tractor.

U.S. Rep. Darin LaHood of the Peoria-area laid out his vision for what would happen in Washington if the White House and Congress were in Republican hands, at the State Fair on Thursday. (WTTW News)

Democrats had their day in the limelight at the Illinois State Fair on Wednesday. Next, it was Republicans’ turn to get into campaign mode, with an annual meeting of the Illinois GOP’s top leaders and a rally.